Is Affiliate Marketing Saturated?


Think You’ve Missed the Boat?

Anyone new to the affiliate marketing game might think that they have “missed the boat” in terms of being able to make money online. But is that really true? Is affiliate marketing overly saturated now.

It would be fair to assume that you might have missed the boat, but the truth is that affiliate marketing is still alive and well, for many small to medium businesses and also start up entreprenuers.

The only thing that has changed is they way you go about it making money.

You see, the business model of affiliate marketing hasn’t changed at all, in fact it is exactly the same as it always has been, as in you become affiliated with a vendor and you sell their products or services, however what has changed is the method in which you get your customers.

This is the problem and has been the problem for most aspiring affiliate marketers.

It’s easy to become an affiliate marketer, however the thing that is really difficult is getting the customers to come and check out your offerings, because the marketplace is fill with other affiliates trying to occupy the same advertising space, whether that space be a facebook ad, a PPC ad, or an organic listing.

This in turns makes most affiliates feel as if the competition is fierce.

Infact it can become so fierce that affiliates drop out of their niches because it can become unprofitable, meaning that they are paying too much money to advertise a product or service for a negative return.

Is It Saturated?

For sure, but here’s where it gets interesting.

You see, most new affiliates tend to gravitate towards competitive products to promote and if you think about it, this is where most of your competition is going to be.

So it’s no wonder people think affiliate marketing is saturated, because the marketplace is filled with competition. But the trick to affiliate marketing is to go where there is no competition and take root there.

There are many many untapped niches that most affiliates would never think of entering that you can make money.

So whilst the heard is focusing their efforts in the most saturated niches, you should look in niches that you can easily take over.

So think about it, all you need to do is acquire the skills and know how and then jump into untapped niches.

The wonderful thing about this strategy is that most affiliates who know what they’re doing won’t be there and chances are you will know more than most of the untrained marketers there.

So while everyone else is preoccupied with trying to dominate the hard to “get into” markets, you’ll quietly making a ton of money behind the scenes.

That’s what a smart marketer would do.




  1. Joey P

    I agree with you 100 %. the Affiliate marketing world is very saturated. In my case, I actually like that it is. I love the thrill of the competition. it makes me want to work even harder at becoming a leader in my niche. I think that the pie is big enough for everyone.
    Great article. I really enjoyed reading it.

  2. Rob S.

    I agree that affiliate marketing is saturated. There is so much competition and it’s hard to make it if you can’t get ranked on the first page of google.
    The key is to choose a niche that you can rank for low hanging keywords. You may not get much traffic initially, but eventually you can rank on the fist page for those keywords.
    So affiliate marketing is not dead. It’s knowing how to work around it.

  3. Netta

    Hey Zona:

    I like your thoughts and your take on the state of affiliate marketing.

    Doing the “me-too” dance, trying to interest people in things and thoughts that are already being touted by a whole crowd of other people who might have more resources than you is likely to be a loser-game.

    Setting up a taco stand down the street from five other taco stands is probably going to be less effective than serving up the best broke-da-mout’ pho the crowd has ever tasted.

  4. Nick

    You make a great point: become a big fish in a small pond. That way you can be the #1 go to person for a group of say, 100,000 people, rather than trying to be #1 for a group of 10,000,000 people that all the big companies are going for.

    And if you consider that new technology comes out each and every year, you should always be able to find a new and good opportunity. I mean, it wasn’t that long ago that we didn’t even have smart phones (or watches). What will the next big thing be, right?

    Do you think having a website is still a good way to market affiliate products? Or is social media better nowadays?


  5. Cathy

    I don’t think affiliate marketing is saturated – yet. Even from a newbie’s perspective, I could see that there are still many niches untapped. There reason I say this is because every time I am doing keyword research, I would find long tail low competition keywords even in the ‘hottest market’.

    Plus, 99% of the people around me still don’t know what affiliate marketing and its potential is all about. That’s a huge audience of opportunity if you asked me.

  6. Guy

    Like you, I don’t think that affiliate marketing is saturated. It’s just the rules of the search engines that have changed. Because they have done a clean up on all spammy websites that were only their to make money and not bringing any value to their visitors.

    If several years ago you could build small tiny websites loaded with affiliate links and counting on tons of suspicious backlinks to be seen on Google, today the rule have changed. You need to show quality. You need to be the kind of website that Google will rank and not slap.

    So yes, like you say, affiliate marketing works the same way. But done in a certain way.

  7. Chris

    Yes affiliate marketing will always be saturated – there are very few niches left to hit up at the end of the day!
    But there is more than enough money out there for everyone – I’ve been doing this for nearly a decade now and the competition never bothered me. In fact – use the competition to egg yourself on a bit! 🙂

  8. Marlinda Davis

    Yes, affiliate marketing is saturated but not saturated all at the same time. Being a part of Wealthy Affiliate has really helped me to see and understand the power of low competition keywords and how keywords work in general. I almost have first page rankings after not even one month of training at WA. It feels great to finally have some direction and success.

    You are also right that there are many untapped niches. There are always new products, technology and services coming out also that anyone can target before they get too competitive.

    Great words of encouragement and tfs!

  9. KeldynFrancis

    I have just typed in ‘Is Affiliate Marketing Saturated’ and your page has come up. I really like what you say about being smart with the niche that you select and do not go with the rest of the market. Could you give me any more information on this as I do not know how to find a niche that I have a chance in?

    • As mentioned earlier in one of my comments, all niches have sub niches associated to them.

      Sub niches can be though of as categories for want of a better word. So imagine these categories branching off the main keyword.

      For example, if someone is looking to buy protein powder, then they maybe researching a number of different protein powder brands.

      So instead of targeting the most popular and most competitive protein brand that everyone else is, you can target a cheaper alternative or a comparable brand but less known.

      That way you’re getting into a less competitive market, but you are attracting the same people.

  10. jschicanha

    after just finished reading about this i have developed some thoughts of just creating one even though i have been thinking of creating a niche in the past now i felt like this Zona Kingston is the greatest and with it i will be able to generate more money

    thanks for the information provided


  11. Matthew

    Very interesting, i totally agree with you, there are still un tapped niches and its just about exposing them and hitting them.
    There are new products hitting the market everyday its just about seeing the potential and having the vision to really capitilise on it.
    Great article! Keep up the solid posts!

  12. Jackie

    Thank you for this great post. The trick is knowing or choosing which markets are saturated and those that are still lucrative. Even some of the obscure markets are filling up. Early on I looked at a few (like cellulite) and I was surprised at the amount of competition there. I know there are many more, but boy it’s time consuming doing this sort of research. Thanks again for this.

    • As mentioned above, the way forward is to find related keyword terms that invoke the same or similar search intend.

      A lot of these terms are searched for, but they just don’t cross our minds at first. But as well delve more into the search subject, these terms become more and more apparent.

  13. Andrew

    Very well said. Or rather, written. Affiliate marketing is super saturated at the moment and it’s simply because becoming an affiliate marketer has become so easy. Anyone can do it. Anyone can build a website thanks to WordPress. Heck, some websites are even free. There’s no wonder why affiliate marketing is so competitive. But it is as you pointed out, people have to start getting into those untapped or rather less competitive niches.

    • For sure, the less competition you have the better in your niche the better.

      What most people don’t understand is that even though you are in a competitive niche there are so many related untapped keywords you can go after that has no competition.

      You’ll find that every niche has many different sub niches, that crossover. So you can piggy back of those sub niches to drive visitors to your offer.

  14. Jacob Schilling

    It is interesting that you suggest finding a Niche that has low competition. I also believe its good advice to make money within that niche. I was taught that any niche is profitable. Do you use keyword research to find your best low competition subjects?
    What if I do have a competitive niche, what would your best advice for that be? My Niche is action/adventure/videogames, if I talked about games that alot of people buy but don’t cover, and also add content that most others dont think of adding, would that set me apart from the competition and have people coming back to my site to check out my content?

    • Most new marketers tend to go for the highly competitive keyword phrases, and that’s where they find it difficult to rank in the search engines.

      So the way to get around it is to target related keywords that you can rank for, that invokes the same or similar search intent.

      All you are wanting to do is to attract visitors with the same or similar search on their minds.

      Sometimes this is easily achievable with long tail keywords as they are variations of the main keyword you are targeting.

  15. Neil

    I think with the sheer size of the internet and the marketplace, people have got the idea into their heads that’s it’s impossible to succeed as affiliate marketers. In fact I knew a Network Marketer who quit building her beauty business because she said there’s too much competition and not a lot of money to be made. HA! I think she probably made a bad mistake because the market provides EVERYONE the opportunity to earn an income. If you work hard enough, you can make money.

    It certainly can be difficult to invite the crowd to check out your products as an affiliate. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to make sales.

    I do agree there’s a lot of competition in certain niches. However, I’m building an online business in the fancy dress costume niche and it’s paying off. You’d also expect Halloween to be the most toughest time of year to make money in my niche but it’s the exact opposite…

    My website visitors and costume sales actually increase 🙂

    But as you suggest, finding the white spaces can also make affiliates big money.


    • Thanks for your reply and insight into the matter Neil.

      You’re a good example of how you can target smaller less obvious markets within a niche and become profitable.

  16. Owain

    A very interesting post to read. As I was reading I thought maybe I should go for the lesser items. Ones that aren’t highly competitive but would still sell I believe.

    I have already chosen my niche. I have featured reviews on some of the popular items as well as lesser known ones. I feel that the lesser known ones are still useful for my readers. After reading your article I think I will therefore continue writing reviews on these lesser known products and service but can still be useful too.

    • admin

      I find that a lot of people just go after the most lucrative markets and give up because they don’t make any money, when the less competitive markets are just waiting for them to capitalize on them.

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